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Keyframe Partners With Sesame Workshop to Help Pinky Dinky Doo Go 3D

Digital animation and visual effects studio Keyframe Digital Productions is co-producing and creating 3D animation for 26 new half-hour episodes of PINKY DINKY DOO for the second season of the animated preschool series produced by Sesame Workshop and Cartoon Pizza.

Keyframe co-founder Clint Green is also producer and production manager for Keyframe. Keyframe co-founder, Darren Cranford, is directing all 26 episodes, which include 52 segments and 104 games. JoEllyn Marlow is overseeing production for Sesame Workshop.

Created by Jim Jinkins, co-founder with David Campbell of Cartoon Pizza, PINKY DINKY DOO revolves around 7-year-old Pinky Dinky Doo, who lives with her family in a "Great Big City." Pinky colorfully engages kids, and inspires them to learn the basics of literacy and storytelling through her imaginative stories and interactive games that promote literacy skills and introduce many memorable "Great Big Fancy Words." Jinkins and Campbell are President and Chief Executive Officer for Cartoon Pizza, respectively.

Keyframe came to the project via its long-standing relationship with producing, licensing, merchandising and brand development company Abrams Gentile Ent. (AGE), with whom Keyframe has worked on such shows as SHINING STARS and LITTLEST LIGHT ON THE CHRISTMAS TREE. AGE was responsible for assembling the team and helped manage and execute the launch of the second season of the series. AGE also took over directing voice work. Sound on the show is being produced by sound studio Highwire Post, including sound effects, audio mixing and voice recording. The music is written and composed by Dan Sawyer.

Though the first season of PINKY DINKY DOO was produced utilizing Flash animation, Keyframe was able to maintain the visual appearance of the first season, while adding the richer, more fluid and vivid look achieved with 3D animation. Additional workstations were added and Keyframe technical directors wrote innovative scripting for Autodesk's 3ds Max, which enabled new artists brought aboard to hit the ground running. Compositing is done with Autodesk's Combustion.

"Visual shortcuts were created," Cranford said, "That enabled artists to work simply and efficiently with the software interface to achieve the best results in the quickest time."

"Our approach for the second season," said Green, "was to produce everything for the least cost, using fewer people, but bringing all the artistic, visual advantageous of 3D, from more character mobility to richer backgrounds and depth-of-field. We were able to keep the total number of people on the animation side, including coordinators, to under 30, which was amazing. Flash is much more time consuming and would have required significantly more people."

Keyframe has also just delivered visual effects for the Prodigy Pictures two-part mini-series XIII, starring Val Kilmer and Stephen Dorff. The mini-series, shot in Toronto, is a political thriller based on the 1984 comic book series of the same name created by Jean Van Hamme and William Vance. Duane Clark directed. Cranford oversaw the Keyframe vfx team while Green supervised the VFX shots on set.

PINKY DINKY DOO has more than 35 worldwide broadcast partners including NOGGIN, CBeebies and Discovery Kids, and covers over 65 territories.